Original leaf from a large early 17th century Gregorian chant. Manuscript calligraphy on animal parchment, in gothic script. Musical notation, on a four-line stave, in black with text in black & red ink. Headings, rubrics & ruling in red. This leaf measures 605x410mm – 23 ¾ x 16 1/8 inches.
From a Gradual executed in a Dominican convent in Poznan (Posen) Poland, c. 1632 (Poland’s intellectual center & one of its oldest towns).
Graduals from Eastern Europe at this period are very uncommon!
This leaf is for use on Holy Saturday. One large illuminated initial ''C'' (2x1.5'') in Celtic design in colors of yellow, taupe, green & black.
One large illuminated initial ''C'' (4.5 x 2.5'') in Celtic design in colors of red & taupe on a gold & black ground of geometric design.
The largest illuminated ''C'' begins Exodus 15:1-2: ''Cantemus Domino…'' (Let us sing a canticle to the Lord for he is gloriously adorned, the horse & rider he hath thrown into the sea; my helper, my protector & my salvation…).
The large knot-work initial ''H'' (verso) is in a Celtic design with colors of gold & black & begins ''Hic est Deus…'' (This is God…).
As is usual with Medieval and Renaissance parchment, the hair side of the leaf is darker than the flesh side, but may take ink somewhat better. The differences in tone caused scribes to arrange their quires so that the hair side of one sheet faced the hair side of the next, and the flesh side faced the flesh side.